2020 Winter Newsletter (BFC)

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Newsletter BreadfortheCity






Dear Bread for the City Family,

We begin 2020 with gratitude for the progress your support helped us achieve last year as well as a clear eye toward the work that still lies ahead. With your support, we will dismantle institutional racism and end poverty in DC within a generation. I hope you read along throughout this publication to see how this is possible. I’m excited to share this bold plan with our extended family.

Your generous support throughout 2019 helped us make a concrete, real-time difference in the lives of thousands of our disenfranchised and underserved neighbors— particularly in the areas of nutrition assistance, housing, and health care. Our annual Holiday Helpings drive was our most successful ever, providing more than our initial goal of 11,000 holiday meal kits between Thanksgiving and Christmas to our neighbors in need. Meanwhile, we were recognized by the American College of Physicians with the Edward R. Loveland Memorial Award for our “distinguished contribution[s] to the health care field.” Receiving this award acknowledges our longstanding commitment to provide comprehensive health care for low-income adults and children in our community. Our leadership team grew this year, with the arrival of our new Head of Advancement & Chief Development Officer, Ashley Domm. Ashley brings not only serious fundraising skills honed over a decade at Georgetown University but an anti-racist lens that will make her work even more impactful for our vital programs. Finally, we continued to make progress on our new Southeast Service Center on Good Hope Road, on schedule to open this spring. As you can see from the photos shown here, the Center will be—thanks to your support— a beacon of care and community to Wards 7 and 8 With gratitude and anticipation for an even more impactful 2020, George A. Jones Chief Executive Officer


Bread for the City’s New Southeast Center— on Track to Open This Spring.

1700 Good Hope Road: Where Direct Service and Systems Change Meet. Whether discussing food insecurity, housing insecurity, disparate health care outcomes or the education deficit, Bread for the City Chief Executive Officer George A. Jones is always careful to draw a direct line between the challenge at hand and institutional racism. “While our immediate mission at Bread for the City is to help people survive, then help them stabilize their lives through food and housing assistance and other direct services,” Jones says, “we also have to ‘go upstream’ to identify and solve systemic issues that are the root cause of the need we see among our clients.” Jones continues, “We know nearly 20% of DC residents— almost all of whom are Black and other people of color—live at or below the poverty line. Racial inequity gives rise to hunger, homelessness, and the countless other social crises our neighbors face on a daily basis.” (continued on next page)

STEADILY BUILDING HOPE IN SOUTHEAST! (CONTINUED) crucial victory, hard won by Bread for the City’s advocacy efforts alongside partner organizers and institutions across DC. But the battle for fair housing is far from over. We must fight to preserve our public housing stock so our neighbors living with low incomes, many of whom are disproportionally people of color, can thrive, not just survive. Our goal to fully fund our Legal Clinic, which provides free advice and representation to residents exploited by slumlords or facing eviction, is just one of Bread for the City’s plans to support a Housing First policy in the District and bring us, as a city, further down the path of eradicating poverty. In 2020, Bread for the City is amplifying its commitment to both helping people in immediate need and achieving the systems change that will—we believe— end poverty in the District within a generation. Our new Southeast Center at 1700 Good Hope Road perfectly illustrates how these missions intersect. “There’s a link between direct services and institutional racism,” explains Jones. “In the case of health care, people of color disproportionately lack preventive health coverage—and in turn use the emergency room for primary care at disparate rates at as much as four times the out-of-pocket cost.” Bread for the City’s new medical clinic east of the Anacostia River, currently a “primary care desert,” will help narrow that preventive care gap—lowering costs for both patients and taxpayers. Furthermore, because 40% of our clients have dependents to support, this center takes a new approach and is designed and staffed to care for children and their caretakers in a compassionate, culturally competent way. Access to affordable, clean, and safe housing can be another “upstream” complex systemic issue that results in disparity and institutional racism. It’s also another area where Bread for the City is putting its full weight into impacting wholesale systems change. More than 50% of Bread for the City’s clients spend at least half of their income on housing. And even those who have the security of one of DC’s rare public housing units frequently find their home becoming uninhabitable due to mold, rodent infestation, or other health hazards that the Housing Authority allows to happen to its properties. That’s why last spring’s allocation by the City Council of $30 million for public housing repairs was such a

In addition to health and legal services, our new Southeast Center houses a job center, client-choice food pantry, and more. “It will be a beacon…a safe place for community members of every age,” Jones says. Beyond our direct service mission, we’ll also continue our leadership role in the broader equity and social justice space, a role we’re proud to have maintained throughout our almost half-a-century history, both regionally and nationally. This is a moment for Bread for the City to step forward and build a coalition of collective impact to increase access to needed services for—and amplify the voices of—the almost 127,000 DC residents living in poverty. We’ll also need to prepare for unforeseen challenges, especially given the economic uncertainty our country faces. When the federal government cuts programs and services, increased need strains local governments—and organizations like Bread for the City must step in to fill the gap in every sector: food, housing, job training and placement, health care and more. Fortunately, we’ve been at this a long time—45 years, to be exact. We’re experts in the direct service work that supports our low-income neighbors, and we’re leaders in the anti-racist work that will ultimately end poverty in DC. We’ve seen what works and we plan to continue to spread this expertise of on-theground and real solutions to partner organizations and our representatives in the DC Council. And we’re supported, every day and in myriad ways, by change agents like you. Will you go upstream with Bread for the City? Together, we’ll build a brighter future for the communities we serve and a stronger, more equitable DC for all.


George A. Jones Honored With Humanitarian Award by DC Commission on Human Rights.

2019 HOLIDAY HELPINGS DRIVE SUCCESS—THANKS TO YOU! You helped provide over 11,000 DC families with holiday meal kits, so your neighbors could celebrate in their own homes.

For more information about our Holiday Helpings holiday tradition, go to www.breadforthecity.org/holidayhelpings.

Save the Date

May 9, 2020 | Marriott Wardman Park Bread for the City’s 2020 Good Hope Gala Dinner and Live Auction For tickets or more information visit: https://breadforthecity.org/goodhopegala

Sponsorship opportunities available! Contact: Christina Puppi, Corporate Partnerships and Events Associate cpuppi@breadforthecity.org | 202-480-8970

We are proud to announce that in December 2019 the DC Commission on Human Rights, in partnership with the DC Office of Human Rights, honored our CEO George A. Jones with its Cornelius R. “Neil” Alexander Humanitarian Award.

George received the award, named for the Commission’s longtime Chief Administrative Law Judge Neil Alexander, because of his fight for equity on behalf of all DC residents, regardless of race, income, or zip code. During his acceptance speech, attendees answered George’s call to action, to undo systemic racism and end poverty, with vigorous applause. In his remarks, George also acknowledged our local government partners’ role in tackling inequity through progressive economic and social justice policies. Please join us in congratulating George and echoing his call to our elected leaders for transformational change!


Meet Our New Chief Development Officer, Ashley Domm! Bread for the City is thrilled to welcome Ashley Domm as our new Head of Advancement & Chief Development Officer. After spending nearly a decade in development at Georgetown University, Ashley decided to put her fundraising talents behind work that truly inspired her: direct service and social justice. “It’s a foundational part of our mission,” says Ashley of Bread for the City’s anti-racist work. “It’s not like we’ve added advocacy because it’s cool. We have the language and culture supporting the work.” Now Ashley is tasked with building the donor relationships and coordinating the fundraising strategies to realize CEO George Jones’ vision of eradicating poverty in our region. “You need investments for real transformation,” Ashley says. “We’re dreaming big.”

Here are some of our most-needed items this winter:

Wish List Add a gift to Bread for the City the next time you shop online!

✔ Diapers of varying sizes

✔ Canned fruit, vegetables and fish

✔ Children’s pajamas

✔ Pots and pans

✔ Grocery store gift cards

✔ Bedding and towels

Got Alexa? Ask her to donate to Bread for the City! Amazon Echo users can now say “Alexa, donate [$ amount] to Bread for the City” to support our vital programs. Alexa will use your default Amazon payment method, so make sure you have voice shopping enabled in the Alexa app. If your device is configured for voice shopping, your four-digit PIN code will be required to donate. When you donate, Amazon will share your name, email, and address with Bread for the City, but not your credit card information. Your gift will be confirmed by emails from both Amazon and Bread for the City. Hey Alexa, how easy is that?

Donate food, clothing, household supplies or other items from our Amazon Wish List! Just visit BreadfortheCity.org/wishlist the next time you’re shopping.

THE EYES HAVE IT! Optometry Services Available.

Bread for the City clients who need their vision checked, or a new prescription for their eyeglasses, are always welcome in Dr. Jessica Hahm’s office. With your support, Dr. Hahm runs Bread for the City’s eye clinic, where she administers comprehensive eye examinations and works collaboratively with our clients’ primary care providers to provide quality, accessible eye care in a comfortable and reassuring environment. Dr. Hahm, who joined Bread for the City last winter, has a degree in cell biology from the University of MarylandCollege Park. She received her Doctor of Optometry from the New England College of Optometry in Boston, MA. Before her arrival at Bread, Dr. Hahm worked in research and development, completed an ocular disease residency and treated underserved communities while on a mission trip to Uganda.


We Give Lifesaving Narcan Doses, Too! Like states across the country, DC has seen a year-after-year uptick in the number of opioid overdose deaths. This epidemic that has claimed countless lives in our region is further complicated by the appearance of fentanyl-tainted heroin. A synthetic morphine substitute about 100 times more powerful than morphine, fentanyl has been implicated in the surging death rate among overdose victims. Washington, DC, has the highest rate of opioid overdose death of any urban area in the country, and the community is afraid. As a result, Bread for the City’s Needle Exchange Program is giving out more Narcan, the anti-overdose drug, than ever before. Our providers counsel patients who are injection drug users, or have friends and family who are, on how to prevent and recognize an overdose, then we prescribe Narcan and demonstrate how to administer the drug itself. As an added program, we also offer Narcan training to all Bread for the City staff members in an effort to increase the number of trained Narcan carriers on the streets of DC. We don’t just dispense Narcan, we encourage patients to teach others how to use it—in case they need to be given the lifesaving drug. We also educate visitors about DC’s Good Samaritan Law, which offers limited legal protections to drug users who call 911 during an overdose. Our Needle Exchange and Narcan program is just one more way we’re providing needed health services to your neighbors. BFC’s Needle Exchange Program is generously supported by the DC Department of Health’s HIV/AIDS, Hepatitis, STD, and TB Administration.

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If you’d like to make a contribution to Bread for the City, you can do so online at www.breadforthecity.org/Winternews.

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